Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Fruit Muffins

These muffins have excellent texture and good flavor. They are wholesome and satisfying. Not too sweet, for those of you looking for a recipe with less sugar. Actually, there's no table sugar involved.

The recipe is from the from "Freedom from Allergy Cookbook," by Ronald Greendberg, MD, and Angela Nori, 1996

Fruit Muffins

1 1/2 cups pear or apple juice
2 Tbs. arrowroot flour(you can use tapioca flour or cornstarch)
2 Tbs. oil
1 1/2 cups oat flour or light buckwheat flour(make your own by blending rolled oats or buckwheat groats in a blender)
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 cup prune spread*
1 cup chopped almonds(optional- I did not use these)

Mix wet ingredients together. Mix dry ingredients together, then mix into wet ingredients. Bake 350 for 20 minutes.

*Prune spread: Blend prunes and water together, until desired consistency is reached. May need to soak or boil the prunes in the water before pureeing in blender. May add apple juice instead of some of the water, and also cinnamon or cloves.

Note: when I made this recipe, I omitted the almonds. The consistency of the batter was too thin, so I ended up adding more oat flour, probably 1 cup more than called for. The muffins worked better when I added extra flour. The ones with the really thin batter did not rise. The ones with extra flour added seemed to use a little more sweetener. I figure I can just make the juice I add a little more concentrated next time(I mix my juice from concentrate). Or, I could add extra honey. But only if I intend to have no sweet toppings added to the muffin. Once toppings are added(some honey and sometimes a little jelly), the sweetness is just right. The muffins are wholesome and satisfying.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Chewy Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies

I just adapted my mom's recipe of choc chip oatmeal cookies to be wheat, dairy and egg free. It doesn't have nuts, either. I encourage you to experiment in turning favorite recipes into something you can eat without the allergens you react to. It's very satisfying and inspires hope! I'm beginning to feel that most any recipe is adaptable. Some more than others.
It looks to me that oatmeal cookie recipes are good canditates for adapting to be wheat free. Rice flour and oats bake well together, especially when additional ingredients help to lighten, moisten, and flavor the mix. I use canola oil instead of margarine, rice flour instead of wheat flour, 1/2 very ripe banana instead of egg, and add a couple teaspoons tapioca flour to help make up for lack of gluten in the rice flour. I get a nice chewy cookie with a slight banana flavor that complements the vanilla and oats. Enjoy!

3/4 cup canola oil(or other vegetable oil)
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 extra ripe banana
1/4 c water(may not need this, check consistency of dough and add this at the end, testing consistency after a tablespoon or two at a time, if the mix is too dry or falls apart too easily)
1 tsp vanilla
3 cup quick oats
1 c rice flour (I use brown rice, it's much more nutritious than white rice flour)
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
6 oz. non-dairy choc chips

Cream sugars and oil. Add banana and vanilla and beat. Mix together oats, flour, b soda and salt, then add to the sugar mixture. Add water if needed. Dough won't be as thick as most cookie doughs, and is a little prone to falling apart. Just drop dough into little mounds on baking sheet. Bake at 375 8-10 min. Cookies will be crisp if baked longer. Take out the cookies when they still appear slightly "wet." The taste and texture are very delicious! Amazing they are wheat free.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Quinoa-basil bell pepper stir fry

Quinoa is a very nutritious grain, and also has low allergenticity, meaning that few have reported to be allergic to it. It can be used in meals as rice is. I've enjoyed it in vegetable stir fry with chicken and soy sauce. I've also enjoyed a dish that was on the back of a Trader Joes package of quinoa. I've altered the recipe.

Rinse quinoa thoroughly in a sieve or colander, until water runs clear. Cook the quinoa in chicken broth or boullion and water. Meanwhile, cook chicken separately in a frying pan, in strips. You can add oil if desired. You can saute garlic cloves or onions as well. (I usually just add garlic and onion powder instead, after the chicken is cooked). When chicken and quinoa are each cooked, add red, yellow, and green bell peppers to the chicken. Cook until tender, but not limp. Then throw in fresh basil leaves and let them wilt. Or, as I do, you can just use crushed basil leaves earlier in the recipe, and not use the fresh stuff(I ought to try the fresh basil, I'm sure it'd be really good). I cook the quinoa or the chicken, or both, with onion powder, garlic powder, pepper, and crushed basil.

Simple bouillion-free variation from Nov 2010: cook boneless, skinless chicken thighs first, covered. Then use broth from thighs for cooking quinoa, adding as much water as needed for broth. Add salt(try 1/2 tsp per cup broth). No chicken boullion needed. Instead of bell peppers, try shredded cabbage.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Garbanzo-Oat Waffles

One of my favorite waffle recipes actually has bean flour! I got it from Below is paraphrased and includes my own versions.

Garbanzo-Oat Waffles

1 cup oats, old fashioned or quick
1/2 cup garbanzo bean flour
1 and 1/4 cup water
1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
2 teaspoons honey
1/4 teaspoon salt (optional)
1/2 teaspoon baking powder

Grind oats in blender to make flour. Add other ingredients and blend. Let sit for a few minutes, then blend again for a couple seconds. Pour into heated, oiled waffle iron.

I've found that you may replace the garbanzo flour with home-ground lentil or yellow split-pea flour. Simply grind dry legumes in a blender to make the flour. Each legume has a slightly different flavor, but each of the ones I've tried are mild (yellow split pea, red lentils, green lentils). You can make several small recipes and see what you like best. The waffles made with lentils or split peas aren't as creamy and light as the garbanzo flour ones. They are more heavy, and the lentil ones are more nutty. More wholesome is how I describe them. I have found, however, that if I decrease the proportion of bean flour to oat flour, it lightens the waffles. Updated note: I now routinely use lentils rather than garbanzo bean flour. I love the yummy wholesome-ness of these waffles, and the practicality of using lentils! I've adapted the recipe; see my post "Deliciously Wholesome Oat-Lentil Waffles."

These waffles, no matter what bean/legume flour you choose, offer a combination of protein and complex carbohydrates. Top them with fruit, fruit purees, or syrup. The girls and I have them often with applesauce on top, or simply with drizzled honey. Simply pureeing strawberries or peaches is delicious. Just put fruit, fresh, frozen, or canned, in a blender. Add liquid(water or fruit juice) if needed to puree. You can thicken the puree with fruit jel(modified cornstarch) if you like. For extra special waffles, you can have strawberry or peach puree, topped with blueberries and coconut. Or some other yummy variation. : ) Try prune spread(see the previous oat waffle post). I like prune spread mixed with strawberry sauce that I keep in my freezer. I also like bottled apricots and pineapple, together with coconut and some of the juice thickened with fruit gel as a topping for waffles. I haven't tried it with this particular kind of waffles.

We enjoy waffles several times a week. I make a big batch at a time, and place waffles on a cooling rack as they're done. Then after breakfast, I put extra waffles into a gallon-size freezer bag and freeze. During the week, I can just gently microwave the waffles to reheat them(it takes just a few seconds). You can also place them directly into a toaster.

Oat-Prune Waffles

I have found some pretty good waffle recipes that have no wheat, eggs, or dairy. Here is one of my favorites so far:

Oat Waffle

from "Freedom from Allergy Cookbook," Ronald Greenberg MD and Angela Nori, 1996.

1 1/4 cups oat flour
1/4 cup prune spread
1 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 Tbs. oil
3/4 cup water

To make the prune spread: blend 8 oz prunes and enough water together in blender to get desired consistency. In the recipe, the authors instruct to cover the prunes with water and let them soak or simmer until soft, then to blend. I didn't need to let the prunes soak, but then I have a VitaMix. Maybe that's the difference. This prune spread is great combined with blended strawberries, as a topping for the waffles. I sweetened the spread by using apple juice for some of the water as I blended the prunes. The prune blend is designed to be used as a spread(which I enjoy instead of jam, sweetened with a little apple juice), or in place of sweeteners in recipes. I like prune spread in oatmeal instead of sugar, or even sometimes with chicken instead of barbeque sauce.

To make the waffles: Mix the dry ingredients. Blend together the prune spread, oil, and water, then stir them into the dry mix. Pour into heated, oiled waffle iron. You can add 1/4 cup soft tofu to the wet mixture to make the waffles lighter(I think they're great without tofu. I haven't actually tried adding tofu). This recipe makes two double waffles. You definitely can make more at a time. I freeze waffles, then pop them in the toaster just before eating, so they're available daily! Waffles are so satisfying to me if they have fruit toppings instead of syrups.

Note: I enjoy Garbanzo-Oat Waffles even more. See, or my next post. This waffle is delicious when eaten with fruit toppings or syrup. Even just plain applesauce on top is good. It has an amazingly good texture, as if eggs had been used in the recipe. It has no eggs, no wheat, and is sweetened with honey. The bean flour and oat combination in the recipe offers a good mix of protein and complex carbohydrates. This recipe can be adapted to use lentil flour instead of garbanzo. I've tried yellow split peas, red lentils, and green lentils each in separate recipes, in place of the garbanzo flour. Each produced a waffle with good texture, and slightly different mild flavor for each flour. Each were satisfactory with a topping to go with the waffle. I recommend these recipes with the lentils especially, because the legumes can easily be ground into flour at home in your own blender. Simply use dry legumes and mix or pulse until the consistency of flour. Try at first small amounts, like a 1/2 cup, at a time to see how your blender performs.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Whole oat tortillas and oat crackers

I made some oat tortillas the other day, and enjoyed them better than the wheat flour ones that I and my husband eat from the store. They're pleasantly wholesome and slightly sweet. Too bad my toddler, who enjoyed making them with me, didn't want to try them! We made crackers out of the same recipe, which we cut out into cookie-cutter shapes. That was fun for my little girl. She, however, didn't try these either, even with sugar sprinkled on top! I and my 10 month old have been enjoying them! Hopefully your toddler will, too. My daughter will probably try them at some point. I'm confident she'll like them!

The recipe is from "Feeding Your Allergic Child," by Elisa Meyer. I paraphrased the instructions, including my own explanations or adaptations.

2 cups oat flour (I use whole oat grouts, and grind them into flour with my wheat mill. You can also use rolled oats and grind them in a blender)

1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2-3/4 cup warm water(original recipe says cold water, but warm works much better for me!)

Mix dry ingredients. Add water slowly and mix evenly with a fork til moistened. Gather dough into a ball, adding more water if needed. For pliable tortillas, I've found it's important for the balls to be moist(not sticky once kneaded, though). Knead well. Split into 8 sections, then form balls with each section. Cover for 10 min. You may want to cover with moist towel to keep them moist.

Shape into tortillas 7 - 8 inches diameter. Cook on hot griddle or medium-high heat frying pan(heat these first), for 1 -2 min per side. Stack on plate and cover with a dish towel. Serve warm. These will toughen quickly when reheated.

To make tortilla chips, cut into triangles and deep fry.

To make crackers, use 1/2 cup oat flour, 1/2 cup rice flour, 1 tablespoon shortening, and 1/4 cup to 1/3 cup water or more. Roll dough and cut out shapes. Spread layer of vegetable or coconut oil on baking sheet. Place cookie shapes onto baking sheet, brush with oil, then sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar. Bake at 375 until golden brown on bottom(maybe 15 min). Watch the crackers, I didn't time how long they took for me, and I didn't use instructions for the crackers. This was something I just decided to do when I adapted the tortilla recipe to include shortening and rice flour, and was going to deep fry cookie cutter shapes for my toddler. I watched each shape melt away into the oil in the frying pan! That's when I decided just to bake them as crackers. It worked great! It makes a crisp cracker that dissolves easily for my 10 month baby. I enjoy them too! I do see on the internet that some cracker recipes have the dough rolled out on the baking sheet, then baked 325 for 20 minutes, then scored into rectangles, then baked again for 20 minutes. That would be easier than shapes. (But not as fun!) Perhaps you might poke the dough with a fork, too. I'll edit this post if I try this and find what works best! I know there are recipes in some cookbooks I just returned to the library. Also online.